Skip to page content

Pierre-Laurent Aimard


About this Artist

Widely acclaimed as a key figure in the music of our time and as a uniquely significant interpreter of piano repertoire from every age, PIERRE-LAURENT AIMARD enjoys an internationally celebrated career that transcends traditional boundaries.

Performing throughout the world each season with the most significant orchestras and conductors, Pierre-Laurent Aimard has in recent seasons been invited to create, direct, and perform in groundbreaking residencies with Carnegie Hall, the Wiener Konzerthaus, the Berliner Philharmonie, the Palais Garnier / Opera de Paris, the Lucerne Festival, Mozarteum Salzburg, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Cité de la Musique, and Southbank Centre. In June 2010 he marked his second year as Artistic Director of the prestigious and historic Aldeburgh Festival, inviting Pierre Boulez and Leon Fleisher for the first time. He was presented with Germany’s Schallplattenkritik “Honorary Prize” in December 2009.

Highlights of the 2010/11 season include solo recitals in Berlin, London, Madrid, Moscow, New York, Paris, Tokyo, and Vienna. He will reappear as a concerto soloist with the Cleveland Orchestra in a 3-week tour of the United States under their Music Director, Franz Welser-Möst, as well as with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, the Filarmonica della Scala, the NHK Symphony, the New York Philharmonic, and the Mahler Chamber Orchestra.

Through professorships at the Hochschule Köln and Conservatoire de Paris, as well as numerous series of concert lectures and workshops worldwide, he sheds an inspiring and very personal light on music of all periods. During 2009, Aimard was invited to give a series of classes and seminars at the College de France, Paris; he was the recipient of the Royal Philharmonic Society’s Instrumentalist Award in spring 2005; and was named “Instrumentalist of the Year” by Musical America in 2007.

Born in Lyon in 1957, Pierre-Laurent Aimard studied at the Paris Conservatoire with Yvonne Loriod, and in London with Maria Curcio. Early career landmarks included winning first prize in the 1973 Messiaen Competition, and being appointed at the age of 19 by Pierre Boulez to become the Ensemble intercontemporain’s first solo pianist. For more than 15 years Aimard collaborated closely with György Ligeti, recording his complete works for piano.

Pierre-Laurent Aimard now records exclusively for Deutsche Grammophon. His first DG release, Bach’s Art of Fugue, received both the “Diapason d’Or” and “Choc du Monde de la Musique”awards, debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s classical chart, and topped iTunes’ classical album download chart. In recent years Pierre-Laurent has been honored with ECHO Classic Awards, in 2003 for his recording of the complete Beethoven Piano Concertos with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe led by Nikolaus Harnoncourt, in 2004 for his CD of Debussy’s Images and Etudes, and more recently in 2009 for his latest recording of solo piano pieces, Hommage à Messiaen, released in October 2008 for DG. In addition, Aimard won a Grammy for his recording of Ives’ “Concord” Sonata and Songs with Susan Graham in 2005.

Other releases in recent years include recital discs of Ravel, Carter, and Schumann, while his disc of Mozart’s Piano Concertos with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, directed from the keyboard by Aimard, has been hailed by Die Zeit as “one of the most exquisite Mozart recordings of all time.” Pierre-Laurent’s recording of Mozart Piano Concertos Nos.17 and 18 and Mozart’s Symphony No. 33, recorded live at the Styriarte Festival in 2006, received MIDEM’s first Classical Award in their download category. His latest disc for DG is Ravel’s Piano Concertos, recorded with the Cleveland Orchestra and Pierre Boulez.